Unbelievable Groom Traditions From Around The World
The way we celebrate our wedding day has changed significantly over recent years. The UK Wedding Report 2019 questioned over 2,000 happy couples about their big day and detailed the ‘Rise of the Groom’. This discovered that men now contribute 35% of the wedding costs and that three quarters of them are heavily involved in the planning process, not just buying the engagement ring.
Although times seem to be changing from a grooms perspective in Britain, some traditions continue to stick around — such as the stag-do abroad and best man’s speech. However, these traditions are quite tame in comparison to those outside of the UK. Prepare yourself for some crazy groom antics…
Photo by Wild Heart Films
A Greek Shave
We’ve all dreamt of having our wedding abroad — and what could be more perfect than one on a picturesque Greek island? Think Santorini. Although only 3% of the survey respondents had their weddings abroad, there are some groom traditions that the Greeks live by.
On the wedding day, the ‘koumparos’ or what we’d call best man, becomes the groom’s personal barber. Taking his new role in stride, the best man will pull out a razor and shave the husband-to-be’s face before he walks down the aisle. Following this, the bride’s mother will feed him honey and almonds!
Going Crazy in Guatemala
This tradition isn’t about the groom specifically, but his parents. We know that parents play a big part in any UK wedding, and reportedly contribute one third of the budget, but parents in Guatemala like to make their roles heard — and you might be surprised by how they do it.
They break things, and yes you heard us correctly. When the happy couple arrive, the groom’s mother will smash a white ceramic bell which is filled with grains. The idea behind this is that by causing this kind of mayhem, prosperity will be brought to the couple.
If you’re familiar with the last two traditions, well here’s one that you’ve definitely never heard of. The groom often relies on his groomsmen to keep him in check for the day ahead, and that’s exactly what they do in Turkey. There’s no time to waste!
On the day of the wedding, his friends will place a Turkish flag on the ground of his home. Although this might sound like something simple, they then place fruit, vegetables and mirrors on top to signify that the wedding ceremony has begun. Let’s just hope they’re not late to the venue!
The French Polynesia Plod
You’ll find this one hard to believe and be grateful that it isn’t a tradition here in the UK. On the Marquesas Islands of French Polynesia, relatives of both the bride and groom are ordered to lay on the floor (face down), side-by-side to be walked on like a rug!
With our family members playing a great part in the planning process, this is likely something we’d stay away from. The survey found that besides the partner, the women of the friend/family network are the most involved — so let’s treat them with a little bit more respect!
South Korean sticks
The groomsmen and his family in South Korea hold nothing back when it comes to the big day. Traditionally, as part of the ‘Falaka’ culture, this group of people hold the groom down and beat the bottom of his feet with a stick or dried fish.
As crazy as that sounds already, they then begin to ask him trivia questions! This is believed to help the groom strengthen his memory… and his feet!
Traditions in Spain
Another dreamy location for a wedding would be in Spain, but we should be questioning the groomsmen’s behaviour. At some Spanish weddings, they will take scissors and chop up the grooms tie — just make sure they stay away from his men’s blazer, he can’t go without it!
The bride isn’t safe either though, they sometimes do this to her garter! Although we must mention, it’s all with good intentions to raise money for the newlyweds.
Those were just some of the crazy groom traditions around the world. Do you have any unusual wedding traditions that run in your family?